contentedly smiling in Scotland

Last week, I was scheduling an interview for when Perfectly Unique comes out in September. I said, “well, I’m going to be out of the country for two weeks in July, so it will have to be after that.”

The man said, “Oh really? Where are you going?”

Without thinking first, I responded, “I’m going on a mission trip to Scotland. I want to go home for a little bit before the book comes out.”

And then I stopped in my tracks.

Home.

Scotland is that. It is my home. Not more than Nashville, but my home nonetheless.

It feels funny to go on a mission trip to your home. But I am. And oh, my heart is already there. I’m fairly certain it never returned back to the States with me, so it’ll be good to be reunited for a time.

The mission trip is to help lead a Christian summer camp for high school students in Scotland. [I’ve been a few times… including last year. You remember Lois, right?] It is a beautiful week of fun and crazy games, topical Biblical teaching, worship, and lots of delicious British food.

And I’ll see my family. [Fine, Scotland has my heart, is my home, and people who feel like my family live there.]

I get to teach a class each morning of camp on what faith really looks like in the real world. I am seeking and praying and asking God how to properly teach that well to students in a different culture. Also, I’m considering using the Real World script. [This is the true story… of seven strangers… picked to live in a house…work together and have their lives taped… to find out what happens… when people stop being polite… and start getting real…The Real World.]

[It is NOT weird to know that by heart.]

I cannot wait for camp. I really can’t.

Then when the mission trip ends, I head to Edinburgh for a few days to see my friends [and can I say “family” again here? Because I’d like to. thanks].

[And for anybody keeping score, I’m sitting in a coffee house crying like a baby. Really. Dripping tears. Apparently I think I can emote wherever I go. Scotland, you always do this to me.]

My trip already feels too short. I can feel the panic in my bones that I won’t get enough times or talks or hugs or moments. But I’m choosing to be still and know God knows and enjoy every waking moment with my people. [I’m not planning on sleeping- what a waste of time with friends.]

. . . . .

The mission trip cost is approximately $1500- that includes my flight, food, and lodging for the week of camp. Would you be willing to partner with me, even just $10? 

If 150 people gave $10, doneski.

I love asking you to support my mission trips and here is why: God gives us each different opportunities at different times. Some day, you’ll be the one going and I’ll be the one with the opportunity to support. This time, I am going on a mission trip and it is your chance, if you wanna, to help make a way for me to minister to these students in a country that is forever sewn into the fabric of me.

Pray about it. And if you feel like God gives you the go-ahead to contribute, HERE’S THE LINK TO GIVE. Then you’ll login, follow directions, and go to “SCOTLAND-PINTO” and put “ANNIE DOWNS” in the memo box that pops up.

If you have any questions, just email me, yo. [annieblogs (at) gmail (dot) com]

AGAIN, this $1500 only pays for travel to Scotland and camp. My time in Edinburgh will not be funded by this.

Please pray with me that the funds to cover the trip expenses will be provided. Pray that I will minister effectively to the teens there. Pray that God would make permanent and beautiful marks on the hearts of each person at camp.

And pray that I get back on the plane to come America. Because if I want to do that, it will be a miracle.

I’m going home, y’all.

. . . . .

Fancy important stuff: Gifts to the church, with an expression of preference for the portion of the ministry expenses that I am trying to raise for the church, are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.